Cat-ered Delia-very


cat_icon.gif delia_icon.gif

Scene Title Cat-ered Delia-very
Synopsis It's a wonderful life. Delivering to the rich and powerful nets Delia $50 and some sage advice.
Date August 30, 2010

Village Renaissance: Cat's Penthouse

Arriving by any of four elevators, visitors will find they open into three foot corridors facing wide double doors made from sturdy southern pine which swing outward and have the strongest locks available. The stairs lead to single doors, also outward opening, at the end of three foot corridors. Entry requires both a key and a keycard; other security measures are a video camera and voice communication terminal at all doors. The 4th Street side has floor to ceiling windows interrupted only by the access points. Cream colored curtains are normally kept closed.

This level has enough space for sixteen apartments. There is an office space with reception area, conference room, and executive office; a room for archery practice and other forms of physical exercise; a very well appointed kitchen and dining area; a music zone with an array of instruments, electronics, and amplifiers; an entertainment area with an HD set covering an entire stretch of wall from floor to ceiling; a locked room where security footage for the building is recorded and can be monitored; a laundry room; a staircase for roof access; central air and heating; the main bedroom and a few smaller guest rooms; plush deep wine carpet everywhere except the kitchen, laundry room and bathrooms; and track lighting everywhere overhead. The light levels can be lowered or raised in the entire place, or selectively by segments. The overall decor suggests the occupant is a woman.

It's an easy enough thing to arrange, all it took was calling the manager of the Alley Cat franchise where she works and requesting Delia Ryans by name. The result is a task similar to the one which brought that red-haired courier and her secret boss together in Central Park's snow leopard exhibit not so long ago. It was early afternoon, Cat was hungry, and she desired something from Piccoli's. But this time she's not out and about somewhere in Nuked York City. She's at home.

When the courier arrives at the Village Renaissance Building, called the Verb by locals and residents, she's directed by a man in a golf shirt bearing the place's logo to take the elevator to the right of the security desk he's at and press the button marked 6. The security panel which normally hides buttons for the top three floors is open by design, so she can access the penthouse. When it opens on that floor, what lies ahead is a short corridor leading from the elevator to the interior of Cat's residence. A pair of double doors are open, and to the right is a spacious kitchen area. Doctor Chesterfield is seated at the table there, a glass of Pepsi by her right hand, as she peruses one among a stack of newspapers both foreign and domestic.

Does she really read all of those? Holy cow.

Of all the luck! One of the favored customers is the doctor herself, by all the couriers in the company. She tips well and apparently the dispatchers don't mind if there's a bit of lollygagging at location instead of getting right back to work. When Delia receives the call over the radio for the pick up and drop off, there's complaints by a few others on shift that they were due for a Chesterfield call. Delia maintains radio silence for the duration, though the smile can't be wiped off her face. She needs the cash if she's going to fake a registration.

When Delia gets into the penthouse, she respectfully turns her radio to almost silent and reaches into her pocket to turn her cell phone to vibrate. Before getting into view of the lady of the manor, Delia checks over the lunch order to make sure it's still warm and hasn't gotten squished in any way whatsoever.

The redhead knocks on the frame of the double doors, smiling to the woman inside. "Alley Cat Courier Service, you wanted lunch Doctor Chesterfield?" The stack of newspapers is eyed with a little bit of envy and the young woman silently thanks the maker for leaving her current novel tucked into her backpack. It really wouldn't do to have a woman like Cat knowing that Delia reads things like Hurried Arms, Hearts Afire, and other smutty novels.

"Cat will do, Delia," she greets with a chuckle. Eyes look up from the newspaper before her, which might be from Berlin. It's written in German, complete with those weird looking B's here and there. The word Berlin is at the top amid the publication's title. The one atop the stack of other publications might be Italian, the title has the word Roma in there.

"Life's going well?" she asks, gesturing for Delia to come place the food on her table while she extracts a fifty dollar bill but doesn't hand it over just yet. "You were really nervous last time we talked." Brown eyes then lower to the printed surface, she looks at it long enough to have seen all the text then moves to another page.

As the gesture dictates, Delia makes her way over to the table and carefully places the lunch down on the table. Twisting her head to look around in all directions, she gives the room a cursory glance before answering, Cat lives in a very nice place. "Uhm, yeah… There were a lot of police officers around and I uhm.. I haven't registered yet." Delia answers honestly, she doesn't give any indication which way she'll be registering.

"And you? How are you?" Her questions are friendly, even accompanied by an easy going smile. The newspaper on the top catches her eye with that funny little B thing and she gives an upward nod in its direction. "Is that a real German paper? From Germany? You read German?"
"German, Italian, French, Spanish, Russian, and Hebrew," she replies as if it were the most natural thing in the world. "English too, of course, and yes. It's German." Cat glances at the auburn-tressed person after responding. "Registration," she breathes out, "such a mess. I think it'll ignite more and more firestorm as time goes on and people with no mojo have to face the intrusion. Hopefully enough people will demand the Linderman Act be repealed, make the Representatives and Senators scared of losing their seats if they don't. It was one thing when only people with mojo had to worry about it. Now that everyone does, the smell of fascism is unmistakable." There's no trace of belief people without mojo won't object to registering because they've got nothing to hide.

"Are you planning to register, Delia?" she inquires in perfect calm. "It's your business, completely, but if not you really need to develop a poker face. Police react to nervous people by paying attention to them."

In as few words as possible, Delia is quite impressed with the woman's linguisitics. Her jaw moves like she's trying to speak, but no sound comes out at all. Maybe just a squeak before, "Wow.. that's a lot." Delia learned the requisite language of spanish, but only in high school and just enough for basic communication.

Blushing, she nods quickly to the woman's question and gives a rather sheepish reply. "Yeah, it's the law… so I sort of have to. I'm going to New Jersey tonight to do it…" Why New Jersey is answered before it's even asked, "Nobody knows who I am there… so no one I know will see me." Poker face isn't really an option for her, she wears every emotion quite plainly on her face.

"For most people, it is a lot of languages," Cat agrees with a chuckle. "But I think I'm behind the curve, being almost twenty-eight and only knowing those seven." What? Only seven? Eyes study Delia's reaction to that claim, then the package of food is opened. Sandwiches are extracted, then a printed flyer. It's not a surprise to her, sometimes couriers do things such as this, and she'd already heard Delia's one of them, but she won't be letting that show.

"Ichihara Bookstore," she muses, "I've been there. Used to be run by a woman called Hokuto. She did tarot readings, but she wasn't a precog. Her mojo was dream visitations. Quite the intriguing talent, that one."

Nodding quickly, Delia blurts out, "Yeah, the new lady does tattoos, tarot, pal, and tea leaves. We've got all kinds of books too, new and used." She closes her mouth immediately and turns a bright red, "I work there too… Hokuto sent me there. But Lydia's got three employees and the store isn't usually too full." A large hint that perhaps the redhead is worried about the status of her own employment in the near future. Clearning her throat, she twists her right big toe on the floor sheepishly and lifts her lips up on one side.

"Dream walki— ing.." she says quickly as Cat talks about the woman's power. "I met her in my dreams… in my dad's dreams."

"Hokuto sent you there?" Brows raise, that's a new development, given the woman's publicized murder, but Cat doesn't seem incredulous. People being dead and turning out not to be dead? Old hat, there've been so many. "That's certainly a story worth hearing, Delia. Sounds like you also walk in dreams. Was it really Hokuto, or a memory your father had about Hokuto as part of a dream? Hokuto told me about how psychology affects a dreamscape, the various parts of a person's mind, and I did some reading on my own. It's so very Jungian. I could recite for you every word he wrote on the subject, just as if I had the books open in front of me, but it'd take a while and probably bore you to sleep." There's a mild grin forming.

Blinking rapidly as most of Cat's words about Junge go straight over her head, Delia just nods. "Uhm.. it was her. Dad recognized her and talked to her… I didn't know her at all. She does things, I can't do them. I — I'm too weak to do what happened by myself. It had to be her, because Dad couldn't have done it, even if he could, there's no way that he'd pull me into his head. He'd probably just go into mine." Delia presses one of her thumbnails against the other one, clicking it quietly with nerves. She's still standing where she was when she first came in, sort of to the side of the table, near a chair but too polite to actually sit without being invited.

If they're going to chat…

"Is it okay if I sit down? I always get nervous if I'm the only one standing… or the only one sitting… " Really, if she's the only one doing anything, she gets really nervous and feels the need to conform. "If… if we're going to talk that is."

"Sit, please," Cat invites with a gesture at that chair. "Can't talk too long, you're working, but there's a bit of time." She takes a drink from her glass of cola, begins to speak as she sets it down afterward. "I'm making a few conclusions here, Delia. One is you just recently developed this ability. It might be scary as hell, discovering you've got mojo and knowing how people often look at us, having registration out there looming. But at the same time it can be incredibly exciting. Mine kicked in years ago." She shows a slight smile, working to hopefully put the younger one more at ease.

"Three guesses what it is."

Nodding quickly, Delia takes a seat in one of the other chairs close to Cat, close enough to visit comfortable but not enough to interrupt a bubble. "Languages," she answers immediately. She's never head of anyone having so many in her life, except for Jackie Chan, though most of his are Asian. She tilts her head downward, a few locks of her curly hair tumbling forward to shield her face. She's feeling quite guilty, she was one of them, the ones that Cat is talking about.

"A couple of months ago… A healer saved my life after I talked to him. He was in a coma and died from my brain tumor before I woke up." The young woman lifts her shoulders a little, uncomfortably as she lifts her head again to give Cat a sheepish smile. "He.. was found in the ice. No one knew what his ability was… he just tested positive. Dad said he was a healer after I told him the story."

"Close, Delia," Cat informs with a quiet chuckle. "Memory. I read a stack like this every day and remember every single word. Makes languages easier, too, you weren't far wrong. I read those dictionaries that go back and forth from English to another language, then get others which cover the grammar and everything else, and there it is. It was very useful going through college. When others were popping pills and doing all night cram sessions before exams, I was able to relax. It's a valuable tool, but like anything else it's got drawbacks. Anytime I go see a really bad movie," she grins, "I'm stuck with it. Every single second burned into my brain." Here she pauses to make eye contact.

Solemnity is shown when she resumes. "How do you feel about yourself now, Delia? Is it like I described, being scared but at the same time excited, wanting to explore what you have? It can help you in nursing, make you more able to comfort patients, and it could be a call to move in a different direction. Study psychology, learn how the human mind works, and become better at using your talent to help others."

"How do I feel?" Delia slumps in her chair, the shrinking of her posture and the hangdog expression on her face is really the only answer needed. As a start to a verbal reply, she takes a deep breath and lets it loose in a long sigh. Clearing her throat, she opens with a small shrug and licks her lips. "I'm scared. I don't want to be evolved, especially with what I saw happens in November. Everyone keeps telling me that it's probably not going to happen… but… I don't know. I saw someone else's vision and it fit with mine, like a puzzle piece."

The turns to Cat, blinking rapidly a few times before pressing her mouth into a thin line. "Did you have a vision? I mean… if you don't want to tell me, it's okay… Doctor Brennan had one, he told me to just stay away from water… But what if I can't help it? What if that's exactly what happens and it's all because I'm evolved?"

"I didn't," Cat states, "I stayed awake, soon after I was up on a bridge helping to get people out of a bus that crashed." Delia's face is observed in quietude for some moments. "What was it you saw, Delia? These things aren't set in stone, they're warnings, opportunities." In saying so Cat exudes a calm confidence, a surety that comes from having defeated the dire possibilities contained in a variety of precognitive revelations.

"When you're on the street and you see a pothole up ahead, do you freak out about the pothole, or calmly try to steer around it?"

Lowering her eyes from Cat's face to the floor, the young courier takes another deep gulping breath inward. This time, she holds it for a pregnant pause before letting it out through her nose. "It was night time," she starts, her voice quivering a little. "I was on a boat with a lot of other people. I was alone, my dad, sister, and Huruma.. I couldn't find any of them. People were screaming and crying, we were all running away. They held off leaving so two more people could get on. One of them was a blonde lady that got shot. The man with her was talking about how they were shooting kids, and she got hurt trying to help them."

Another series of rapid blinks wards off the collection of tears welling in her eyes. Pursing her lips together tightly, they curve downward before she sniffles in a deep breath and looks up at Cat again. "The last part of it, I was asking the man if I could help." Pause. "I met the blonde lady a couple of days ago, her name is Kaylee… she works with me at the store."
Silence is held as she listens, Cat mentally debating on whether or not to let on she knows these people Delia just mentioned. It's a brief situation, resulting in keeping the status quo. Now would not be the time to come clean about knowing the redhead's father and so many other people. Though she might be amused to see the look on her face if she's mentioned by any of them.

That's when a possibility surfaces in her mind. Maybe they already have, and this is why Delia's so free with the names. Interesting.

"So you're on the boat, and Kaylee's been shot. Are you injured yourself, Delia?"

"No, I don't think so," Delia says with a small shake of her head. Her blue eyes dart around the room, not focusing on any particular detail. It's more like she's not seeing the room at all, like she's envisioning the scenario she just spilled and trying to remember all the little things. There's another shake of her head, this time a little more certain and she reaches up to push some of her hair out of the way. "No, I wasn't hurt. Just scared. Everyone was scared. I don't want to register because I think they're just going to use it to get rid of us. There's an evolved woman in the ICU at the hospital… she's in a coma because she got beat up so badly."

"So for all you know, Delia," Cat suggests, "the boat is someplace you'll be needed, to use some of your training as a nurse to help that shot woman, the one you called Kaylee and the other people who might be hurt." Registration isn't commented on, since Delia said already she plans to do so in New Jersey. She might suggest the woman come to the Ferry and get a fake registration, but given how easily she drops names and her lack of composure when police are nearby, she chooses not to. Maybe at some future point when Miss Ryans is better able to handle herself.

"The hospital needs me too though," Delia says softly, looking down at the carpet. She's so new to all of this. New to this 'evolved' life and unaware of so many things. Frowning, she looks over at Cat and winkles her nose a little. "I just don't know how to do any of this. It's not like everything I needed to know was turned on when this stupid ability switch was flipped. Everything is different, before, the only thing I was scared of is another midtown bomber. I was scared of evolved people and I went to Humanis First things, and I listened… Then I started working at the hospital… And it's not fair how everything is so different."

Stopping short, Delia turns to face Cat and shakes her head, "I'm sorry. I just don't know what to do most of the time. Half the people I talk to tell me that it's not a big deal and they're so open… the other half don't say anything. Then I'm supposed to register because it's the law but then I'm not supposed to because of… stuff."

"I'm not your father, or anyone else in a position to give you orders, Delia," Cat tells her simply. "You're scared, the world's turned upside down. I won't tell you registration doesn't have risks, because it does. I won't claim any of this is fair. Life is like that. Bad things happen to good people. Good things happen to bad people. I don't see that as any reason to be negative, though. The good generally outweighs the bad, even when it doesn't seem so. If you don't register, you might have to hide or face legal troubles only to wind up being registered anyway if you get caught. If you do register, you could be on tier two and exposed to the public." She takes a short drink from her glass.

"I'd still recommend you embrace what nature's given you, learn things to make you better at it. Like psychology. But you're a grown woman, old enough to make your own decisions. The biggest questions are if you'll let fear rule your life, or rule the fear."

Nodding once, Delia just gives the woman a rather weak smile and stands. "I should get going… I'll think about psychology.. but I was really thinking about becoming a doctor. I'm good with people in comas." The young woman has found a little bit of a niche to help people using her ability, however minor. Giving people who can't see the sun or talk to anyone else gives them a reason to try.

"Thanks for everything again, Do— Cat. I'll make sure to get in touch or something when I've figured everything out." The smile gets a little stronger and she even shows a sliver of teeth. Turning, she starts walking toward the door.

Some consideration is given to recommending psychiatry, the combination of psychology and physical medicine, but she holds back. There's plenty of time to advance that idea, after all. First Delia just needs to become comfortable in her own body again. For parting commentary, while rising to walk Delia out, Cat offers "Sometime soon it might be possible to let you explore some of my dreams. I've experienced it before. I could show you some really interesting things. But for now, take care, Delia. Remember this: No one can make you feel inferior without your consent."

After Miss Ryans is gone, Cat goes back to her table and the food, extracting the iPhone to make a call.

"Reynold," she starts when the other end picks up, "don't bust Delia's chops about delivering fliers for that bookstore on the job. It's given me an idea. I'm going to draw up a contract. Maybe we can get the new manager out there paying us to distribute them."

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